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This model shop was designed to hang on the wall as a 3 dimensional picture. The shop itself is just 80mm deep with a board at the bottom protruding a further 50mm that forms the pavement at the front of the shop. The main body of the shop was made from 3 layers of 3mm ply. Air drying clay was rolled into thin sheets and glued to the plywood carcase using PVA glue. The clay was covered with cling film (food wrap) to stop it drying too quickly. The thin line of concrete between the bricks was marked out using a strip of wood. Once all had been marked out the cling film was removed and the clay allowed to dry. Any wrinkles in the cling film help improve the overall effect.
The wooden frame of the bay window was constructed from machined hardwood and carefully glued together in the opening left in the shop.
The door frame was machined from hardwood and again glued into the opening left for it.
When all was dry the wooden frames were given an undercoat, left to dry and sanded with fine wet & dry paper and again undercoated. This process of undercoating and sanding was repeated until an acceptable finish was achieved. The frames were painted in gloss and left to dry thoroughly.
The next job was to prime the bricks in grey. This also gave the initial coat to the cement layer between the bricks. The bricks themselves were painted with acrylic paint. Initially a base brick red and then with different shades of red to add some authenticity. This part takes a lot of time as the more carefully and slowly you add the different shades the better the overall finish.
The bay window was glazed with 1.5mm thick glass. It is difficult to make plastic look as authentic in this situation, but it is safer if little hands are likely to get close. The glass was held in place using thin beads of silicon.
The door was hinged and a simple latch constructed that is worked by the door handle.
Again the door was glazed, this time with 2mm thick glass that was etched using a glass etching kit sold for etching car glazing. The glass was first cleaned using soap and water and then the design applied using Letraset. The Letraset stops the etching liquid from attacking the glass. After the time specified for the etching fluid it was carefully washed away before the Letraset was removed.
The rear panel of the cake shop was made detachable so that the shop could be accessed and a glass panel forming the ceiling of the shop allows lots of light in. The cakes were made from Fimo. No further comment will be made on how the cakes were made as these deserve an article in their own right. There are lots of other details in the shop that add to the authenticity such as the wooden floor boards, shop counter, shelf on the inside of the fron wall with a basket on it and other items such as the glass shelves in the bay window.
If you have any models that you would like to exhibit within our pages please send us some photographs and a few words to describe them - all welcome. ed.